For their first show of 2020, the Ladysmith Waterfront Gallery has chosen a poignant topic: climate change.
The show features 77 pieces of art. Each piece is inspired by climate change in some way. There is a special display of 40 small flags created by a rug hooking group. After they come down from the walls of the Waterfront Gallery, the flags will make their way to the Robert Batemen Gallery in Victoria.
“I think it’s really important,” Ladysmith Art Council president Kathy Holmes said. “And it’s a different medium. We don’t normally see it.”
Originally, the gallery had another topic scheduled to be their first show of 2020, but they changed the topic to climate change.
“We thought this was way more important. Artists often see the world completely differently, and worry about their environment,” Holmes said.
Opening night was Saturday, January 4. Guy Dauncey of the Yellow Point Ecological Society was the guest speaker.
“They had double the attendance they expected. It was a total full house,” Dauncey said. “That tells me that climate change is really on people’s minds. They’re really concerned about it.”
Dauncey’s talk focused on the issues around climate change, and how art can influence change. He also outlined a new report from Stanford University that said if the world switched from fossil fuels to renewable sources like solar, wind, hydro, and geothermal, there would be enough energy to power the world for a lesser cost than what nations are currently spending.
“People don’t need to think there’s no solution to this,” Dauncey said.
Dauncey said that fear and despair don’t motivate people to change, but hope and excitement does. He noted that the work on display at the Waterfront Gallery is focused more on hope than on fear.
“Artists have an ability to lift us to another place and remind us of other dimensions in life,” Dauncey said. “Almost all of what’s on display is the beauty of nature and how it’s threatened.”
The show will be on display until January 27. The Waterfront Gallery is currently located at Davis Road School, 444 Parkhill Terrace. The gallery is open from 11:00 am – 4:00 pm daily.